Athenas – 2017 NCAA DIII Champions

I have absolutely no affiliation with CMS. In fact they were the only school I didn’t talk to at the Georgetown Regional. But, I’m so happy for the schools, players, staff, parents and friends. I can now honestly say that for as long as I’ve been doing this blog, we’ve always had a West Region champion!

Marguax Arnston was a beast! 18 kills on 27 swings for a .519 hitting percentage! When she went out late in the third set I thought she had played her last NCAA volleyball. How cool that she subs in at 24 and was there anyone in the gym who thought, “Yeah, I bet they go to the middle here.”?

Great job by Shelbi Stein as the opposites dominated Wittenberg all night and by Isabelle Taylor. Someone make sure Phoebe Madsen gets some Advil as she is going to have back and neck issues from all of the sets behind her tonight. How cool for Clara Madsen to win in her senior year and get to watch her younger sister on the floor.

This now marks the third straight year we’ve had a sweep in the finals (twice at the expense of Wittenberg). I thought the reseeding effort this year would help that but CMS just wasn’t going to be denied.

Now to comment on the West Region a bit. I haven’t taken the time to do some comparisons regarding NCAA selection so this is just some eyeballs talking (yeah, I’m a poet). CMS had to win 6 matches to win the championship and with maybe the exception of the Ithaca match, the three hardest had to be in the Georgetown Regional. I know the West Region is small but we truly had 4 of the top teams in the nation. Not, 4 of the top 25…but 4 of theeeeeeeee top teams in the NATION! So, when the NCAA decides NOT to select at least 8 West Region teams to their regional (for the second time in three years), it starts to get frustrating. You keep favoring the larger regions and then reward them by inserting them into weaker regionals. I understand the cost factor, BUT we are told that cost is not a factor in selection. So, maybe think about this next year (and I know you won’t) when you bypass UMHB or a La Verne or whomever steps up next season for a Babson or a Vassar or whomever plays well in their large region but doesn’t beat anyone of consequence.

*Mic Drop*

*Walks away, shakes his head, walks back, picks up mic…*

And stop messing over the Midwest, too!

*Mic Drop*


9 thoughts on “Athenas – 2017 NCAA DIII Champions

  1. Robert,

    Thanks for a great year covering the West. It was great to watch CMS and the West dominate. Already looking forward to next year.

    Go Lutes! (Thatโ€™s Pac Lu to you)

    Have a gear off season.


    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Brad! Really wonderful to meet you and your other parents in Georgetown. You need to replace your amazing setter, if memory serves correctly. Not an easy task but everyone watch out if they do because their hitters return.

      My favorite memory of the regional was sitting in my chair in the bleachers and seeing Coach Aoki heading my way. Walks across the court, up the stairs and stops in front of me to introduce himself. I’m sure I babbled something incoherently. I think I must have said something nice and he says, “Yeah, but you hate the Northwest Conference.” LOL!


  2. Congratulations to CMS on becoming the 4th champion from California! They join Cal Lu (’15), La Verne(’82 ’01) and UC San Diego (7 times last in ’97).

    RR, I did not realize that TX is tied with NE with zero championships! ๐Ÿ™‚
    I will predict TX gets one first.


  3. Curt – I’m kicking myself for not pointing that out first. I make a big deal of it all year and then forget. We’ve got our 8 straight year where it proves out.

    Ned – Let’s remember that Texas is just one small state with maybe 1 or 2 DIII teams in it. New England covers like 30 states with thousands of schools. My D+ in Geography is paying off…who knew?


  4. Robert, first off, it was nice meeting you at the Regionals. Finally putting a face with what I read weekly. I would like to pump up the SoCal area now. Not only in my daughters 4 years playing did the National Champion come from the West but from the SCIAC, Cal Lu 15 and now CMS. Cal Lu had a down year this year but I expect them to be in the hunt again next year. CMS losing 6 Seniors might hurt them some but with their Beautiful new Facility and a National Championship in their back pocket I don’t see them falling off too much. The Poets wont surprise next year, like this year, and they should be a pretty strong team with a majority of their team returning. Even though my daughter is finished. I, like you, wont be able to stay away and will be keeping tabs on West Region DIII Womens VB. Keep up the Great work.
    Go Poets


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